Riverdale Season 4 Interview: Lili Reinhart on Betty’s Complicated Relationships

Season three of The CW’s Riverdale was one bizarre twist after another, and season four isn’t likely to see the core four calming down and living life as normal high school seniors. The town’s too weird for normal and it’s not about to change as Archie (KJ Apa), Betty (Lili Reinhart), Veronica (Camila Mendes), and Jughead (Cole Sprouse) make their way through their final year as high schoolers.

Sitting down to discuss season four at the San Diego Comic Con, Lili Reinhart explained what’s going on with Betty when the new season arrives. She also discussed Betty’s relationships and how she’s dealing with her parents, Charles, and the side effects of The Farm.

Riverdale season four will premiere on October 9, 2019.

What state of mind is Betty at the beginning of the season?

Lili Reinhart: “It’s summer and it’s three or two and half months after she saw her dad get killed in front of her, which is not a great thing to have happen to you. And she is sort of struggling with the idea that she feels like she can’t grieve him. She hasn’t properly grieved him because of who he was at the end of his life…such a bad person and so morally wrong and he was a murderer. She feels like she can’t grieve him or miss him, because that would make her a bad person.

So, that’s really sad because she still has all these good memories of him being a good father to her growing up. And so I think it’s a little heartbreaking to see her deal with that, but Jughead is really there for her in that situation. And, I think she’s really just going to lean on her friends. She can’t trust too many people. Her circle of friendship is getting a little bit smaller and smaller because of who she can rely on, who she can trust. I think the core four is strong this season because they have to be because it seems like all the outside sources are dwindling.”

How is her relationship with Charles? It must be awkward for her and Jughead to share a brother.

Lili Reinhart: “We don’t necessarily see the awkwardness yet that Charles causes for Betty and Jughead. I think we’ll dive into that, maybe some interesting family dinners once Alice returns – if she returns – to town. I think it’s going to be a super interesting thing to explore, clearly.

But Betty is helping Charles at the FBI doing what she can to figure out where Edgar is, how to track down Alice. They’re definitely working together and I think she knows she can trust him as well because he is family and he cares for Alice, too. I think that’s one more ally on her side that she can actually trust. He’s not a villain, he’s not looking for anything else. It’s not another Chic situation. It’s the real deal.”

Riverdale is full of shocking moments but I don’t think many people saw Alice’s reveal that she’s working with the FBI coming. Did you see that?

Lili Reinhart: “That’s because Mädchen (Amick) is a great actress. Also, none of us knew until the end.”

Were you as shocked as we were?

Lili Reinhart: “Was I? I feel like part of…I feel like I kind of knew on some level because I know that Alice wouldn’t have done that to Betty.

Alice and Betty have such a complicated relationship, obviously, but it’s one of my favorite relationships on the show mostly because I love Mädchen so much and she’s like a mother to me in a way. But she and I really love Alice and Betty’s relationship and I think Betty is going to do everything in her power to try and get Alice home.

Even though she feels a little betrayed by the fact that Alice kept this huge thing from her, she knows it was for her own safety and for a greater cause of stopping Edgar. So, I think there’s some reparations to be made between the two of them but I hope that they can because I really love that relationship.”

Riverdale star Lili Reinhart
Lili Reinhart as Betty in ‘Riverdale’ season 3 episode 10 (Photo: Jack Rowand © 2019 The CW Network)

Are there going to be any lingering effects on Betty from her time at The Farm because of the hypnosis and mind manipulation? Is some of that going to continue to haunt her this season?

Lili Reinhart: “I think it’s haunting Cheryl because her dead brother is in her basement. I think Betty bounces back pretty quickly considering what happens to her. Although, yes, she did deal with the hypnosis, I think she’s recovered and moving on as best as she can.

Cheryl is a little weaker. (Laughing) Well, that’s rude to say but she is. She’s a little bit more easily swayed and manipulated, I think. So Cheryl is definitely dealing with the fallout from the hypnosis rather than Betty.”

Are we going to see Betty dive more into her dark side or find that balance between Good Betty and Dark Betty?

Lili Reinhart: “I think it was interesting the first two seasons because Dark Betty was like this physical manifestation of darkness that a human has. And now it’s sort of evolved into she’s accepted that she has a dark side – everyone has a dark side – so now it’s not really like this costume that she has to put on. It’s just a part of herself. So I think you do see her when she was shoving Evelyn up against a locker, that was part of that darkness and that kind of switch a little bit. She can get fired up. But I think that’s what that is. It’s not like a Good Betty and Dark Betty anymore; it’s just sort of Betty.”

Are there any lighter moments in season four?

Lili Reinhart: “Like prom? Well, there is a Halloween episode which is going to be fun. But I’m sure someone will die in it because why wouldn’t that happen? Or, maybe not. I don’t know. I think it’s going to be fun to see them experience the high school senior year and graduate and Betty get her diploma. I just think that’s going to be really, really sweet.”